Ligia is a Virtua registered dietitian. She also happens to be married to the master chef at an Atlantic City casino. Ligia grew up in San Paulo, Brazil, so her view on food is unique and interesting.
Eating in Brazil is very different from here. There are few processed foods, even in large cities. Fast food chains don’t make it there because Brazilians eat clean.This means they eat whole foods that are home prepared, with people lingering over lunch and dinner for hours.
Why did I become a dietitian? From childhood, I was always in a fight with my weight. So I went to college for nutrition. There I learned that eating healthy isn’t about restriction and deprivation. It about eating the right balance of nutrients, vitamins and amino acids to stay healthy and energized.
How do I handle snack cravings? My husband helps me plan for them. We prepare cut-up vegetables, fruit, nuts, even packets of unflavored oatmeal for quick healthy snacks — and pack everything into a tote bag that I always carry with me.
What is it like being a dietitian married to a Master Chef? My husband is a wonderful, innovative chef. At home, we join the best from his world with mine. An example: For an at-home pasta sauce, we use garlic, olive oil and wine instead of cream, butter and flour. Substitutions like these add up to make a big difference over a week ... and a lifetime.